Hackbright for Good

Last weekend I spent 2 days building and learning at Hackbright Academy’s Hack(bright) for good hackathon. It was really exciting to learn about new technologies (Django & Python) and see some of my teammates push code & submit pull requests for the first time.

Our team’s idea was to create an app that allows NGOs a simple way to create SMS campaigns to send scheduled reminders to patients to take their medication, go to doctor’s appointments, or schedule immunizations.

Code: https://github.com/kmjennison/sms_campaign

Site: http://hackbrightforgood.github.io/sms_campaign/#

We used bootstrap for the front-end, GitHub Pages to host, the Twilio API built in a Python powered Django app to enroll and send messages, and Github.com for version control & issue tracking. (Also the text were sent in the character of our celebrity spokesperson, Ryan Gosling.)

There were a bunch of other great apps as well, including a calendar to find events for beginning computer users in the San Francisco, powered by Sheetsee, DeltaWorks, an app that compares the cost of standard energy vs renewable energy based on zip code & and Flowbright, an app that can be used to track water usage by room to identify waste & spending.

Our team, NGO, GO! won for Most Creative!

The weekend was great in so many ways – the hackathon was beginner friendly, majority female, & everyone who participated was there to build something for the greater good.

Also check out HackBright’s blog post – http://blog.hackbrightacademy.com/2014/05/hackbrightforgood-2014-prizes/

How I use GitHub to Learn to Code

In October 2012 I started at GitHub, Inc. as an accountant and not so coincidentally I’ve been learning to code ever since. ┬áMy first taste of open source was a contribution to Rails Girls of a guide on how to push your project to GitHub. That was really exciting! From there I went on to create an HTML/CSS matching game and a bunch of other random websites. This talk is about how I got started learning to code using GitHub and other great resources.

Slides

Video

Hackentine’s Day HTML/CSS/JS Tutorial

Happy Hackentine’s Day!

Over the last weekend I went to an awesome workshop at Hackbright Academy, put on by Martha Kelly (@marthakelly).

Martha provided the tutorial and source code and we had the rest of the day to hack together a valentine’s inspired e-card.

Here is what I came up with – http://alysonla.github.io/hackentinesday/

We didn’t go into how to host a front-end web project so I put together a YouTube tutorial on How to use GitHub Pages!

WordPress is hard (kinda)

In order to track my thoughts in blog form, I needed a website. I decided to go for WordPress and this theme, well, because it was easy to step up and kinda pretty. But figuring out WordPress for the first time was not easy at all. I tried to follow WordPress’ “Famous 5-minute Install” but several hours later I was still lost. First, I didn’t know what a webserver was (not sure if I do now) and what’s an FTP. I diligently googled both terms but new words are hard and I eventually gave up.

Then I did a search for wordpress in GitHub and I came across this guy: https://github.com/webjames/heroku-wordpress-svbtle who made an f’ing amazing readme that even I could follow along with. It helped that I had experience with Git and deploying to Heroku from Railsbridge so it made the process all the more approachable. And now I have a website – ta-da!

Hello world!

Welcome to my blog! I’m gonna try to use this blog to keep track of my dabblings in the world of code. Follow along!